"Simple Man" is the last track on side one of Lynyrd Skynyrd's debut album, (Pronounced 'Lĕh-'nérd 'Skin-'nérd).
The song is one of Lynyrd Skynyrd's most popular songs. Since the song became available for digital download, it has become Lynyrd Skynyrd's third best-selling digital song after "Sweet Home Alabama" and "Free Bird." It has sold 1,333,000 copies in the U.S. as of November 2013.
In 2004, Jacksonville rockers Shinedown followed in the footsteps of some other well-known Jacksonville natives when they recorded a cover of Lynyrd Skynyrd’s ‘Simple Man’. What originally began as an acoustic “thank you” to Ronnie’s widow Judy Van Zant gave way to a stunning re-release of their debut album Leave a Whisper that included both an acoustic and hard rock version of ‘Simple Man,’ becoming Shinedown’s most critically acclaimed album to date.
It’s no easy task taking the most iconic song in Lynyrd Skynyrd’s repertoire and performing it before a live audience, but in this exclusive live footage, not only do the guys in Shinedown do just that, they absolutely own it!
If ever there was a modern rock vocalist capable of delivering the kind of emotionally charged vocal performance required for a song like this, it’s Shinedown frontman Brent Smith; he is the perfect blend of rock and roll and a little of that gritty soul that seems to be so unique to Southern rock and not only does the band as a whole manage to add something uniquely Shinedown to ‘Simple Man,’ they also hold tight to the song’s original spirit.
We loved the original because while it rocked, it made us think and more importantly still, made us feel – when it comes to covers, however, Shinedown delivered far and away one of the best renditions of this Lynyrd Skynyrd classic that we’ve ever heard.
Well, mama told me, when I was young Said, "Sit beside me, my only son, And listen closely to what I say. And if you do this, It'll help you some sunny day. Ah, yeah, it will. Oh, take your time, don't live too fast. Troubles will come and they will pass. You'll find a woman and you'll find love. And don't forget that there is a someone up above. And be a simple kind of man. Be something you love and understand. Baby, be a simple kind of man. Oh, won't you do this for me, son, if you can, if you can? Forget your lust from the rich man's gold. All that you need now is in your soul. And you can do this (oh, baby) if you try. All that I want from you, my son, is to be satisfied. And be a simple kind of man. Be something that you love and understand. Baby, be a simple kind of man. Oh, won't you do this for me, son, if you can, if you can? Oh, don't you worry. You'll find yourself. Follow your heart And nothing else. And you can do this (oh, baby) if you try. All that I want from you, my son, is to be satisfied. And be a simple kind of man. Be something you love and understand. Baby, be a simple kind of man. Oh, won't you do this for me, son, if you can? So, baby, be a simple, be a simple man. Oh, won't you do this for me, son, if you can?"